Latest News and Comment from Education

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Latinos criticize lack of representation on school board | Catalyst Chicago

Latinos criticize lack of representation on school board | Catalyst Chicago:

Latinos criticize lack of representation on school board

A number of prominent Latinos in Chicago are criticizing Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s decision to make an already disproportionately white school board even more ethnically lopsided by removing one of his only two Hispanic appointees.
“We are disappointed that in a school district that is 46 percent Latino -- Latinos being the largest cohort of students now, having exceeded African Americans in the district a number of years ago -- that there was not a Latino named to the school board,” says Sylvia Puente, executive director of the non-partisan Latino Policy Forum. “It feels like it’s a missed opportunity.”
There are now four white board members -- up from three -- while less than 10 percent of children in Chicago Public Schools are white. The remaining two board members are black, compared with nearly 40 percent of students.
In a statement, a spokeswoman for Emanuel said his administration "has always been reflective of the citizens we serve, and he will continue to ensure that Latinos are represented in leadership and Board positions."
The statement goes on to name board member and Interim CEO Jesse Ruiz as well as the mayor's top education advisor, Arnaldo Rivera. Ruiz, an attorney and Mexican-American who formerly chaired the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE), is currently not a voting school board member in his capacity as interim CEO.
Insiders tell Catalyst that at least one Latino turned down an invitation to sit on the board.
It's unclear whether politics has anything to do with the reduction in Latino representation on the board. The shuffle comes two months after all but one of the city’s Hispanic-majority wards went for Emanuel's opponent, the Mexican-born Jesus "Chuy" Garcia, a Cook County commissioner, in the mayoral elections.
U.S. Rep. Luis Gutierrez -- by far Emanuel's biggest campaign supporter from Chicago's Hispanic community -- says he sees no problem with the ethnic makeup of the board, given the influence of Ruiz and Rivera on the daily workings of the district.
"I'd rather have somebody be in charge of the School Board every day than to try to reach some symbolic positioning of Latinos," says Gutierrez, an Illinois Democrat.
But Miguel del Valle, a former state senator who ran against Emanuel in 2011 and backed Garcia in this year's race, says the ethnic disparity on the school board just doesn't make sense.
“If you can’t find one person in the City of Chicago, given all the Latinos we have out there in different arenas, with the skills and talents and the background to be able to serve responsibly and meet the fiduciary obligations, I have to say that they didn’t try hard enough," he says.
Census data from the 2013 American Community Survey show that Latinos make up just under 30 percent of city residents.
Del Valle, who formerly chaired the Illinois P-20 Council, says he understands that it might be challenging to find someone willing to join the board “under the current circumstances.” CPS faces a $1.1 billion budget deficit next fiscal year and is in the middle of contract negotiations with a teachers union that went on strike last time around.
“Let’s face it: it’s a tough situation to walk into. But you look and you look and you look,” he says.
Reflecting ‘needs and aspirations’
Earlier this week Emanuel announced he was replacing four board members whose terms expire at the end of the month, including Carlos Azcoitia, a former educator and Cuban immigrant. He'd beennamed to the board in 2012 to fill a vacancy left when another Latino board member, Rodrigo Latinos criticize lack of representation on school board | Catalyst Chicago:

30,000 Teachers Walk Out In Protest Of Big Class Sizes | PopularResistance.Org

30,000 Teachers Walk Out In Protest Of Big Class Sizes | PopularResistance.Org:

30,000 Teachers Walk Out In Protest Of Big Class Sizes In WA State

Since late April, Washington state teachers have been striking for reduced class sizes and better funding for classroom programs. (Washington Educators Association / Facebook)

Since late April, Washington state teachers have been striking for reduced class sizes and better funding for classroom programs. (Washington Educators Association / Facebook)
Seattle, WA – On Tuesday, May 19, thousands of demonstrators marched through downtown Seattle to support a rolling strike by public school teachers across Washington state. The teachers are protesting what they say are unacceptably high class sizes and low pay, stemming from their state legislature’s failure to fully fund public education.
Six thousand teachers and supporters from Seattle Public Schools and the nearby districts of Mercer Island and Issaquah shut down intersections for blocks in the largest coordinated action since the rolling walkout began on April 22. In total, at least 30,000 teachers in 65 striking school districts have participated in one-day strikes.
Washington Educators Association (WEA), the statewide teachers union (a National Education Association affiliate), has pointed out that the state has the sixth-highest student-teacher ratio of any state, at 19.4, according to NEA data from 2013. The union calculates that an additional 11,960 teachers would be needed to reduce the student-teacher ratio to the national average of 15.9. Class sizes are typically about nine or 10 students larger than the student-teacher ratio. Teachers say that big class sizes in Washington state result in poor working and learning conditions.
The strike is unusual in that the teachers are not pressuring their respective school districts, but rather targeting the state legislature for its unwillingness to fund education enough to decrease class sizes and increase teacher compensation. Popular signs at rallies across the state have read “Educators care for our kids every day – It’s time the legislature cared” and “On strike against legislature – stop blaming teachers – start funding schools.”
On the class size and funding issue, union members say they have both the courts and the voters on their side. In 2012, the state Supreme Court ruled in McCleary vs. Washington that the legislature had failed in its constitutional duty to “amply provide for the education of all children within its borders” and ordered it to implement adequate funding increases by 2018. Last September, the Washington Supreme Court found the legislature in contempt of court for failing “to provide the court a complete plan for fully implementing its program of basic education,” warning lawmakers that the legislature would be “sanctioned” if it did not develop a plan by the end of the legislative cycle.
Compounding this legal pressure is the binding initiative 1351 approved by voters in November 2014, which calls for a 20 percent reduction in class size and the hiring of 15,000 teachers over the next four years, according to advocates of the initiative.
While both legislatures have put forward proposals to fund class size decreases up to the third grade, none have proposed fully funding initiative 1351. Gov. Jay Inslee has called for two consecutive special sessions to address the funding issue and other budgetary matters before a July 1 deadline. If they don’t resolve the budget, legislators risk a government shutdown.
Jesse Hagopian, a history teacher at Garfield High, says that teachers’ “backs are to the wall,” necessitating collective action.
“The old strategy of supporting politicians and hoping that they will enact pro-education policies has not worked for so long that it has actually caused a state of crisis for our union as a whole,” he says. “It’s reached a level of absurdity. I think [lack of support from the legislature] made [WEA] leadership more willing to back some of our smaller locals that began this one-day strike wave in the state.”
The strikes have been primarily organized by teachers union locals, rather than by the statewide union. On the eve of the first strikes in late April, a WEA spokesperson told Washington’s News Tribune that it was up to locals to “decide how big the protest gets this year.” What began with eight districts has now swelled to 65.
The legislature’s unwillingness to go fully fund I-1351 and adhere to McCleary has 30,000 Teachers Walk Out In Protest Of Big Class Sizes | PopularResistance.Org:

Judge Rules Second Version of New York Teachers’ Exam Is Also Racially Biased -

Judge Rules Second Version of New York Teachers’ Exam Is Also Racially Biased -

Judge Rules Second Version of New York Teachers’ Exam Is Also Racially Biased

A federal judge on Friday found that an exam for New York teaching candidates was racially discriminatory because it did not measure skills necessary to do the job, the latest step in a court battle over teacher qualifications that has spanned nearly 20 years.
The exam, the second incarnation of the Liberal Arts and Sciences Test, called the LAST-2, was administered from 2004 through 2012 and was designed to test an applicant’s knowledge of liberal arts and science.
But the test was found to fail minority teaching candidates at a higher rate than white candidates. According to Friday’s decision, written by Judge Kimba M. Wood of Federal District Court in Manhattan, the pass rate for African-American and Latino candidates was between 54 percent and 75 percent of the pass rate for white candidates. Once it was established that minority applicants were failing at a disproportionately high rate, the burden shifted to education officials to prove that the skills being tested were necessary to do the job; otherwise, the test would be ruled discriminatory.
In creating the test, the company, National Evaluation Systems, sent surveys to educators around New York State to determine if the test’s “content objectives” were relevant and important to teaching. The samples for both surveys were small, however, Judge Wood said.
The judge found that National Evaluation Systems, now called Evaluation Systems, part of Pearson Education, went about the process backward.
“Instead of beginning with ascertaining the job tasks of New York teachers, the two LAST examinations began with the premise that all New York teachers should be required to demonstrate an understanding of the liberal arts,” Judge Wood wrote.
Joshua Sohn, a partner at the firm Mishcon de Reya, who represents the prospective teachers in the case, echoed the that sentiment.
“They started with the conclusion, without any support, that this is what you actually needed to know to be an effective teacher,” Mr. Sohn said.
With this ruling, the LAST-2 meets the same fate of the LAST-1, an earlier version of the test, given from 1993 to 2004, that was also found to be discriminatory.
It was not immediately clear how many people would be affected by the decision or how much this might cost New York City.
So far, about 3,900 people have filed claim forms over the first version of the exam. Mr. Sohn said the compensation is still being litigated. Some of those people worked as substitutes and may now be eligible for full-time positions, while others had already been promoted because they met other hiring requirements.
Mr. Sohn said thousands of people presumably took the second exam version while it was in use, and under Title VII, the federal prohibition on employment discrimination, minority candidates who failed might be entitled to back pay. This ruling applies only to the city, but could have ramifications for the rest of the state, where the test was also used.
Nicholas Paolucci, a spokesman for the New York City Law Department, Judge Rules Second Version of New York Teachers’ Exam Is Also Racially Biased -

Jersey Jazzman: "Partially Ineffective" and "Ineffective" Are NOT the Same Teacher Rating

Jersey Jazzman: "Partially Ineffective" and "Ineffective" Are NOT the Same Teacher Rating:

"Partially Ineffective" and "Ineffective" Are NOT the Same Teacher Rating

So the first "report" came out about New Jersey's new teacher evaluation system, aka Operation Hindenburg. And guess who was on the TV talking about it?

Thanks to Briana Vannozzi for including me in her piece. There's much more to say, but I want to highlight one thing Vannozzi pointed to that several reporters have glossed over; here's a graph from the report:

The report itself (and most of the media reporting that has followed) talks about the approximately 3 percent of teachers who are Ineffective or Partially Ineffective. It then compares this number to the 0.8 percent of teachers found "not acceptable" under the previous system.

First of all: I have no idea where the state got this 0.8 percent figure. There is no documentation or data source cited in the report for this figure. The state does collect this information through its data systems, but I am unaware of any auditing that occurred to determine the validity and reliability of this figure.

Let's, however, assume it's correct; there is still no evidence that "not acceptable" in the old system is equivalent to "Ineffective or Partially Effective" in the new system.

And that's a problem.

Think about the term "Partially Effective"; yes, you are only doing things right some of the time, but not all of the time. If you were a total screw up, you'd be "Ineffective," and your administrators would either be applying a very intensive intervention or, more likely, showing you the door.

One of the myths that has been perpetuated by people who don't know how schools work is that teacher evaluations before "reform" were simple fine/not fine ratings with no differentiation. But that's simply not true: good principals in well-run districts always gave their teachers more feedback than a simple binary rating. Evaluation systems always
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District Purchasing of High-Tech Devices: How Teachers Continue to Lose Out | Larry Cuban on School Reform and Classroom Practice

District Purchasing of High-Tech Devices: How Teachers Continue to Lose Out | Larry Cuban on School Reform and Classroom Practice:

District Purchasing of High-Tech Devices: How Teachers Continue to Lose Out

When I buy a new laptop, desktop, or smart phone, I have in mind what I want to use it for and how much I can spend. I then read about the appliance and its software, listen to other users and what they say about it, and then try it out for awhile. I ask myself: does it do what I need it to do? Is the price of the device worth what I want it to do? Then I decide whether or not to invest in it. I am what academics would call a “rational actor.” Yet there is an emotional side to my decision also: how does it look? how does it feel to use? how many other people are using it? Do I really need it or have the ads influenced my decision?
That is me the individual buyer and user. It is not, however, in most instances the classroom teacher who seldom gets the chance to decide what software enter her classroom. The classroom teacher is the end user and yet, in most cases, is seldom consulted about how new instructional software can be best used with students. (I and others have written about this problem of who exactly is the customer for school high-tech and who is the end-user–a split that, in my opinion, impedes integration of high-tech devices into classroom lessons (seehereherehere, and here)
A recent publication from a non-profit organization and for-profit vendors (Digital Promise and The Education Industry Association) makes this point of the divorce between who use the classroom software–the “consumer” (read: district administrators, directors of technology, principals)–and who is the end-user (read: teachers)  indirectly while raising directly tough issues that exist in districts when school boards buy laptops, tablets, hand-held devices and software.
In Improving Ed-Tech Purchasing, the authors, in concert with the Johns Hopkins Center for Research and Reform, surveyed over 300 “education leaders and technology executives” and conducted 50 in-depth interviews with these respondents. They were principals, superintendents, business officers, District Purchasing of High-Tech Devices: How Teachers Continue to Lose Out | Larry Cuban on School Reform and Classroom Practice:

Students tell their stories: I tried cyber school ... I was going to give up school. | Philadelphia Public School Notebook

Students tell their stories: I tried cyber school ... I was going to give up school. | Philadelphia Public School Notebook:

Students tell their stories: I tried cyber school ... I was going to give up school.

In researching our edition on "boosting graduation rates for all," the Notebook interviewed young people who had dropped out and were now reengaging in school. We asked why they left, why they returned, and what obstacles they face. Some described heartbreaking personal situations and herculean struggles. But all displayed hope and optimism about their futures. They were all eager to tell their stories.
Simone Gause, 19, from Frankford, did well at First Philadelphia Charter School for Literacy through 8th grade. But due to health issues, her mother decided she should try cyber education for the first two years of high school.
This derailed her. Sitting at home with a computer and communicating with teachers remotely didn’t work for her. “It was hard,” she said. "I was teaching myself."
“I was going to give up school.”
An aunt told her about YESPhilly, where she found a caring mentor in the school counselor and the focus to buckle down and graduate. She plans to attend trade school so she can fulfill her goal of becoming a cosmetologist.
“I want to own my own business someday,” she said.

Rallies on Monday / DAMAGING changes in store for WI public schools in one list : blue cheddar

Rallies on Monday / DAMAGING changes in store for WI public schools in one list : blue cheddar:

Rallies on Monday / DAMAGING changes in store for WI public schools in one list

Sun Prairie Monday June 8, 4-6 PM (they need volunteers)
Green Bay Monday June 8, 7:20 AM – 8:00 AM
Appleton Monday June 8 11:45 AM – 1 PM Press Conference to Support Our Schools
3:30 PM – 5:00 PM Honkin’ Good Rally for our Schools
This list is abbreviated* from a (PDF) letter that was recently sent to parents of children in the Rhinelander, WI public school. (doesn’t even list everything – already massive)
1. School District of Rhinelander public schools and schools across the state will have their state aid cut to allow for voucher expansion, i.e. public tax dollars used to pay for a student’s private education….
2. According to Michael Griffith, a senior policy analyst for the Education Commission of the States, this budget drives Wisconsin under the national average in per pupil spending…
3. The new law eliminates many standards for licensing teachers – no bachelor’s degree would be needed to teach our students in multiple subject areas. …
4. The tests that students are required to take will be different for the third consecutive year. … This change also makes it impossible to compare public, private, and charter schools.
5. The proposed law allows students in special education to use $12,000 in publicly funded annual vouchers to attend private and parochial schools. In these schools, students would not be guaranteed the legal rights and protections afforded to them by federal law. …
6. The new law would allow “learning portfolios” to replace up to one-half the credits needed to graduate from high school. The law would require that a diploma earned in this manner be the equivalent of a diploma earned through actual course completion. This proposal has the potential to change what high schools look and feel like across the state; including the likelihood that the rigor needed to earn a high school diploma would be significantly reduced, jeopardizing both in and out-of-state college acceptance.
7. The new law would allow home-schooled students and virtual school students to participate in any extra-curricular or athletic team that our school district offers. …
8. There is a new requirement in the law that mandates passing a civics assessment for high school graduation. This would be a 100 question test. This test is in addition to the multitude of other state mandated tests that students are already required to take. This proposal, set to become law, has had very little discussion and has no plan for implementation.
9. Our schools will be subject to a rating system based on stars. Can a star-rating system adequately portray the quality of our schools? The current school report cards indicate if schools are failing to meet, meeting, or exceeding expectations with specific feedback on areas of strength and recommendations for addressing concerns.
You can visit the site and enter your address on the right to find your legislators and contact them about these issues.
FIND legislators
Add any other events related to public education in a comment please. Thanks.
* Sorry I’m not copying, pasting, and reformatting this whole letter today. My neighbor downstairs was having NOISY drama at 3:00 in the morning. I’m low on sleep.Rallies on Monday / DAMAGING changes in store for WI public schools in one list : blue cheddar:

Why a simple 30-year-old chart is an ingenious teaching tool today - The Washington Post

Why a simple 30-year-old chart is an ingenious teaching tool today - The Washington Post:

Why a simple 30-year-old chart is an ingenious teaching tool today

Almost three decades ago, a simple chart known as the K-W-L was born — and it has helped millions of teachers help kids think and learn ever since. What is it and why is it so powerful? Author Alfie Kohn explains, and even makes the case that this old chart should be viewed as radical in today’s learning environment.  Kohn is the author of  14 books, including “Schooling Beyond Measure….And Other Unorthdox Essays About Education,” just published by Heinemann.
By Alfie Kohn
I believe it was Dale Carnegie who first counseled public speakers to “tell the audience what you’re going to say . . . say it . . . then tell them what you’ve said.” This advice, which presumably appeared in his book “How to Lose Friends and Irritate People,” suggests a rather dim view of the audience’s capacity to comprehend or remember what they’ve heard – or, perhaps, the speaker’s capacity to come up with enough content to fill the allotted time.
Nevertheless, the general idea of sandwiching the main event between some sort of preparation and some sort of reflection actually makes a fair bit of sense when applied to learning — provided that the goal is more ambitious than mere repetition.
Consider the iconic K-W-L chart, first described by literacy expert Donna Ogle in an article published almost 30 years ago in “The Reading Teacher.”[1] Students are asked to brainstorm what they already know (K) about the subject matter of the text they’re going to read and also to anticipate the kinds of information it’s likely to contain. Then they discuss what they hope to learn (W). Finally, after reading, they consider what they actually did learn (L).
I’ll return in a moment to how this procedure illustrates what might be called sandwiching, but first let me say a word about K-W-L in its own right. Its status as one of those nifty practical ideas that teachers can pick up quickly and start using the following morning probably explains why it became so popular. But, like other teaching strategies that are deceptively radical in their implications, K-W-L is also easily corrupted – and often implemented so poorly as to undermine any meaningful benefit.
For example, rather than being given time to reflect on what, if anything, they genuinely want to know about a given subject, students may be asked to cough up questions on the spot — which results in responses that are perfunctory and inauthentic. Even when students come up with thoughtful questions, moreover, the teacher may write them down and then ignore them, teaching the unit exactly the way she had originally planned. Finally, the Why a simple 30-year-old chart is an ingenious teaching tool today - The Washington Post:

The Education of EduShyster (a Comedy) | EduShyster

The Education of EduShyster (a Comedy) | EduShyster:

The Education of EduShyster (a Comedy)

Can you believe I’ve been at this for three years???
three candlesNote: to mark the third anniversary of my blog, I’m sharing a chapter that I wrote for a book called Resisting Reform: Reclaiming Public Education Through Grassroots Activism. I recount my unlikely journey into the world of edu-blogging and reveal at long last what (or rather who) prompted me to come out as my self…
I can tell you exactly when came into being. It was the summer of 2012 and I was deep in conversation with my husband. Well, maybe conversation isn’t quite the right word as it implies some sort of a back-and-forth. This was more of a one-way affair—a diatribe to be precise, and I was the one doing the dia-tribing. As he liked to point out, I’d been doing a lot of this lately. Our early morning newspaper reading sessions had become a launching pad for my many strong opinions.
The cause of this particular harangue was yet another column in the Boston Globe giving unquestioning support to a proposed ballot measure that would essentially eliminate tenure for teachers in Massachusetts. Authored by a writer whose beat seemed to consist alternately of teacher bashing and charter school cheerleading, the column was a familiar mélange of talking points: change-obstructing teachers union (check), overpaid teachers with guarantees of life-time employment (check), obligatory reference to the achievement gap (check).
*You know that the Globe writers have strict seniority protections,* I pronounced in the direction of my husband, who wielded a copy of the Boston Herald like a shield. *You have to admit that’s kind of a double standard.* I paused, giving him an opportunity to respond to this obvious outrage. Nothing. *At one point they had a provision in their contract that guaranteed them jobs for life.* Still nothing. *Well, don’t you think that’s outrageous?* I abandoned the Globe in order to better make my case.
*You know what I think?* he said finally, peering at me over the top of his paper. *I The Education of EduShyster (a Comedy) | EduShyster:

Millions in costly real estate deals threaten Albany charter school foundation - Times Union

Millions in costly real estate deals threaten Albany charter school foundation - Times Union:

Millions in costly real estate deals threaten Albany charter school foundation

For 15 years, the Brighter Choice Foundationhas been the leading backer of charter schools in Albany, which is among the most concentrated and contentious charter proving grounds in the state.
Founded by ideological pioneers of New York's charter movement, Brighter Choice helped seed 11 of the 12 charter schools once operating within a 20-minute walk of the state Capitol. Seven will still be open next school year.
But the nonprofit has altered the city's landscape in a more material way inseparable from its mission to provide alternatives to struggling city schools: It has also been one of Albany's most prolific real estate developers.
The foundation has struck complex financing arrangements for tens of millions of dollars to build nine new schools — the equivalent of a second school district paid for with tax money city schools are legally bound to share with the charters to educate the children who choose to attend them.
There may be no better example than the Brighter Choice Middle School for Boys and Brighter Choice Middle School for Girls, which will saddle the foundation with a $15 million debt on the 4-year-old Elk Street building they share when they close next month.
The deals rest on a key assumption: That the schools, whose charters need to be renewed by the state every five years, will stay open long enough to pay the loans taken out to build them.
To critics, they represent big-money gambles on unproven schools. To boosters they are emblematic of a fundamental flaw in New York's 1998 charter school law that excluded charters from the huge pool of state aid — some $2.7 billion this year — to renovate or replace aging public school buildings.
"We started off with one hand tied behind our back," said Kyle Rosenkrans, CEO of the New York City-based Northeast Charter Schools Network.
The result, the network alleges in a lawsuit filed against the state last year, is that charters spend money on real estate rather than on educating students.
Brighter Choice may be ground zero for the long-term consequences of that.
Buffeted by a series of school closures, the foundation finds itself under significant financial pressure in part due to bets on several schools the state says have failed to meet their educational benchmarks, according to financial documents reviewed by the Times Union.
The closure of the Brighter Choice middle schools will eventually leave the foundation on the hook for a $15.1 million construction debt it guaranteed that Wall Street doubts it can pay for more than three years.
The 30-year bonds were issued in 2012 through the Industrial Development Authority of the City of Phoenix; in March, Fitch Ratings called the schools' default "inevitable."
The foundation has also guaranteed another $1.35 million in related loans for the schools.
A default by the schools would force the foundation to find a way to pay the bondholders — Chicago-based Nuveen Asset Management — without the $14,072 per-student revenue that is the core of the Brighter Choice business model, or face having the building sold out from under it.
This has happened before. After New Covenant Charter School on North Lark Street lost its charter in 2010 with nearly $16 million in principal still owed on bonds issued to build it, the city school district ultimately bought the building for $2.5 million, with bondholders recouping just a fraction of their investment.
New Covenant was the city's first charter school and the only one not backed by Brighter Choice.
Despite the acrimony between the two, the city school district may help provide Brighter Choice a short-term reprieve. Scrambling to find space to accommodate the roughly 440 students from the closing middle schools, the district is in talks to lease the middle school building through the end of next school year for up to $371,855 — a fraction of the annual debt payments, which are in excess of $1 million, according to financial statements.

Over 250 nation's mayors to gather in San Francisco this summer -

Over 250 nation's mayors to gather in San Francisco this summer -

Over 250 nation's mayors to gather in San Francisco this summer

WASHINGTON, DC - Under the leadership of US Conference of Mayors (USCM) President Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson and host San Francisco (CA) Mayor Ed Lee, more than 250 of the nation's mayors will convene at the Hilton San Francisco Union Square this summer to discuss the economic health of the nation's cities and their metropolitan areas, and the factors that contribute to growth and/or decline. Mayors will also release their annual U.S. Metro Economies Report containing last year's Gross Metropolitan Product (GMP) numbers for each of the nation's 363 metro areas, along with 2015-2016 metro economic forecasts of GMP and employment.
Issues topping the Cities 3.0 agenda in San Francisco include: water conservation, transportation, municipal bonds and marketplace fairness, education, workforce development and apprenticeship programs for youth, technology and innovation, energy efficiency, community policing and more. Mayors will also give awards to cities showcasing stellar best-practices in the areas of climate protection, manufacturing innovation, neighborhood stabilization, college and career-readiness training, and programs that enhance the livability of America's cities.
On the final day of the meeting, the mayors will usher in new leadership and vote on policy resolutions to forward to Congress and the Administration in the hopes of shaping federal legislation.
All business sessions are OPEN to the press unless otherwise indicated (EVENING EVENTS ARE CLOSED TO PRESS). ONLY reporters with proper press credentials will be allowed access.
Meeting highlights include (at Hilton Union Square unless otherwise noted):
FRIDAY, JUNE 19 – Opening Press Conference at 11:15am; Site Visit to New Door Ventures; Water Council Mtg re Implementing CA Water Restrictions; Mayors and Police Chiefs Task Force Mtg; Climate Protection Awards for Winning Cities Announced; Walmart VP Gerard Dehrmann to launch Cycle 2 of Manufacturing Innovation Fund; Discussion on Music and Politics feat. MC Hammer and Carlos Santana; Workshop on WAZE (traffic app); Kaiser Permanente CEO Bernard Tyson; Salesforce Exec. VP Vivek Kundra; House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi; Committee Mtgs: Criminal and Social Justice; Energy; Jobs, Education and Workforce w/ U.S. Labor Sec Perez; Metropolitan Economics; Women Mayors
SATURDAY, JUNE 20 – USCM President Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson's Farewell Address; City Livability Awards for Winning Cities Announced; CA Senator Dianne Feinstein; U.S. Ambassador Andrew Young; MLB Commissioner Robert Manfred, Jr. re Play Ball Anncmnt.; Workshops: Increasing Diversity in Tech Industry; Building Out Broadband; Balancing Regulations and Economic Growth; Task Force Mtgs: Food Policy; Education Excellence; My Brother's Keeper; Commmitte Mtgs: Housing & Community Development; Health & Human Services; Environment; Transportation & Communications
SUNDAY, JUNE 21 – Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel; Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti; CA Lt Gov Gavin Newsom; USCM/USA Funds Education Pathways with a Purpose Grant Awards & Forum; Small Business Clusters Forum; Special Plenary Session on Education Reform feat. Michelle Rhee, Antonio Villaraigosa; USCM/Wells Fargo CommunityWINS Grant Awards for Neighborhood Stabilization
MONDAY, JUNE 22 – Mayors' Amtrak Advisory Council; Ports and Exports Task Force Mtg; National Park Service Dir Jonathan Jarvis; Business Session to Debate/Vote on Policy Resolutions by Conference General Body; New USCM President Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake's Inaugural Address
WHO: Opening Press Conference of The U.S. Conference of Mayors 83rd Annual Meeting: USCM Leadership, Host San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee (New Economic Data To Be Released)
WHEN: Friday, June 19, 2015 at 11:15am
WHERE: Grand Ballroom -- Salon A | Hilton San Francisco Union Square | 333 O' Farrell Street | San Francisco, CA

“White Girl” Kati Haycock Takes On Marc Tucker and His Dissing Annual Testing | deutsch29

“White Girl” Kati Haycock Takes On Marc Tucker and His Dissing Annual Testing | deutsch29:

“White Girl” Kati Haycock Takes On Marc Tucker and His Dissing Annual Testing

On May 28, 2015, National Center on Education and the Economy (NCEE) president Marc Tucker wrote a piece for Ed Week in which he argued against the utility of annual testing. Below is an excerpt from his post:
…The data show that, although the performance of poor and minority students improved after passage of the No Child Left Behind Act, it was actually improving at a faster rate before the passage of the No Child Left Behind Act.  Over the 15-year history of the No Child Left Behind Act, there is no data to show that it contributed to improved student performance for poor and minority students at the high school level, which is where it counts.
Those who argue that annual accountability testing of every child is essential for the advancement of poor and minority children ought to be able to show that poor and minority children perform better in education systems that have such requirements and worse in systems that don’t have them.  But that is simply not the case.  Many nations that have no annual accountability testing requirements have higher average performance for poor and minority students and smaller gaps between their performance and the performance of majority students than we do here in the United States.  How can annual testing be a civil right if that is so?
In order to prove Tucker wrong, all one must do is refute the claims he makes based upon testing data available pre-NCLB and then during NCLB.
One could also attempt to show that some other nations without annual testing, their minority children demonstrate “achievement gaps” on international tests or based upon some other outcome, such as secondary school graduation.
But Education Trust president Kati Haycock chose another route in contesting Tucker’s claims:
The daytime television route.
In her June 4, 2015, Education Post rebuttal, Haycock jumps out of her daytime-TV chair, knocking it back as she rushes forward to get in Tucker’s face while declaring that she, “even a white girl,” can register what is Tucker’s obvious insult:  That the civil rights community could possibly be injuring children by insisting upon annual standardized testing.
No such drama was necessary.  All Haycock had to do was refute Tucker’s evidence.
She did not.
Instead, she goes on to write (in the $12 million, Walton-Broad-Bloomberg-funded, corporate-reform Education Post) that she– the white girl– is there to call Tucker out on behalf of a group of 12 civil rights organizations that she admittedly did not join with in their May 5, 2015, formal declaration against opting out.
In her Education Post entry, Haycock states she could refute Tucker’s evidence but that the real issue is his insult to those civil rights orgs that may or may not speak up for themselves:
If it mattered, I would refute Tucker’s assertions one by one. That would be easy, for the “evidence” he puts forth is weak. His suggestion, in particular, that these organizations are blind to the problems inherent in standardized testing should give pause to any knowledgeable reader, for these very organizations have fought against the misuse of tests for decades.
If test results are really what matters, why not present the evidence? Are the only “knowledgeable readers” the ones that already agree with Haycock– and therefore do not need to see any pesky evidence?
And actually, it is possible for an organization to “fight against the misuse of tests for decades” and not succeed in such a fight. But this concept, Haycock dismisses out of hand.
Instead of providing evidence of other nations that have successfully used annual